Back in the day, to maintain high tech functions on the road, you need to carry a pretty heavy backpack or suitcase, filled with a laptop, digital camera and camcorder, plus your mobile phone. Nowadays, you may only need one gadget – your Smartphone. The smartest Smartphones let you watch streaming video and live television, surf the web, check your email, take pictures, give you turn-by-turn directions, check your bank balance  -- and oh yes, make phone calls.

Personal computers can still do some things that Smartphones really can’t manage, like composing documents or editing graphics files. Still, the line between PCs and Smartphones is becoming more progressively more blurred. It’s no wonder that since 2010, Smartphone sales have exceeded those of laptops and desktop computers.

Streaming Video and Audio

Back in the 1990s and early 2000s, the trend for mobile phones was toward smaller and smaller models. With the rise of streaming video, video conference calling and live television transmissions via Smartphone, that trend has been reversed. Nowadays, consumers desire their Smartphone screens to have top quality resolution of videos and graphics and high fidelity transmission of music files, and they’re willing to make the tradeoff to a larger Smartphone to have those features.

Camera and Camcorder

If you’re a professional photographer, you may carry a full-fledged digital camera, a digital camcorder, or both.  If you’re a purist, you may have a film camera or camcorder. But for many average consumers, their Smartphones are their cameras. Many Smartphones have megapixel ratings that are as good or better as those of low-end digital cameras. Many Smartphones also allow you to record short video clips as well.

Web Surfing, Text and Email

Once upon a time BlackBerry captured a large segment of the market because it allowed users to compose and read email messages. Nowadays, nearly all cell phones have that capability, along with sending and receiving text messages and web surfing. In fact, it’s safe to say that checking email and texts on a Smartphone has become as routine as checking voicemail messages always has been. Young people especially have perfected the two-thumb keyboard tapping technique for composing email messages and running text exchanges on their Smartphones.


Where Smartphone functionality really eclipses that of PCs is with apps. There are apps that scout out the best restaurants, let you know how long you have to wait for the next train or bus, or allow you to perform banking transactions. Many merchants have dedicated apps; so do news organizations.  Apps allow you to shop online, keep track of your vital health statistics and search for open positions. Many apps are user friendly, especially for tech savvy Smartphone users. In addition, many apps are low priced or even free, prompting many Smartphone users to utilize dozens at a time.

If you’re looking at using a smartphone to replace or compliment some of the features of your normal computer then there are some great options available. Blackberry’s are still very popular with business users; but increasingly smartphones are offering more functionality when it comes to business and computer use. IPhones and Android mobile phones offer thousands of apps that take over some of the functionality of your home computer and now, with tablet, apps are starting to come forward that really do everything a computer can!